Feeling lost, lonely or depressed? Perhaps you need a little guidance? For those
of you who don’t believe in modern psychiatric theory (I’m feeling much better
now, thank you), you could try to obtain the legendary ‘Eyes of Guidance’ instead.
These ancient jewels are hidden deep in the bowels of the earth and are protected
by hordes of skeletons, mummies, rats, watery things, creatures from the Black
Lagoon, floating knives, demons, and other supernatural nasties.
So the way I see it you have four ways to deal with your problems. 1- Pay $120 per hour for a shrink. 2- Call the Ghostbusters. 3- Just deal with the voices in your head. 4- Buy Crypt Killer for your PlayStation. Whatever you do, don’t pick #4.
Crypt Killer is the latest arcade import from Konami. It’s a gun shooter, so you will also need to buy the Konami ‘Justifier’, or another light gun (unless you already have one). Unfortunately, Crypt Killer doesn’t justify the purchase of a ‘Justifier’ or anything else for that matter. The graphics and gameplay have both suffered terribly in the translation.
I don’t even know where to begin with this stinkbomb, but gun games always make me feel a bit like Clint Eastwood, so let’s go through the game in classic Clint style…
Crypt Killer does have some good points if you look hard enough. There are lots of different enemies (we already went through some of them), and four power upped guns to pick up: the shotgun, automatic, grenade gun, and gatling gun.
The best part of the game is the large number of levels. There are six levels
to choose from at the start, and twice during each level you are asked to choose
one of two paths. Admittedly the paths sometimes lead to the same place, so there
aren’t really 42 different levels, but this is still a big improvement over gun
games like Horned Owl where there is only one mission and one path. Crypt
Killer also has multiple endings depending on which of the paths you take.
Well, the gameplay is bad, for
a start. The gun doesn’t aim very well, and the firing feels choppy and unresponsive.
The gun alignment is prone to change during the game; this is something the designers
obviously knew about, as re-aligning the gun is the only pause option.
The screen flash when you fire is very bad and distracting. The attention
to detail is awful. The ‘point of impact’ shown on the screen often looks ridiculous
because it drips blood whether you hit anything or not. This means you get to
see bleeding walls, water, rocks, sand and many other traditionally non-bleeding
objects. This has the additional problem of making it difficult to tell when you
have actually hit an enemy.
Well, the monsters are ugly, but not in the good ‘extremely monster-like and scary’ sense. Crypt Killer has the worst graphics I have ever seen on a PlayStation game. The monsters are blocky, pixilated, and VERY badly animated. The backgrounds are nearly as bad, full of pop-up problems, polygonal errors and boring textures.
There really is no excuse for a game this bad from a company like Konami that
has treated us to so many terrific titles, like the recent PSX gem Suikoden.
We know what could have been done by looking at games like Virtua
Cop 2 for the Saturn, which is both fun to play and aesthetically pleasing.
I love gun games, but because few people spend the extra money to buy the light gun, not many of them are made. Crypt Killer is not going to convince even one extra person to buy that gun. The large number of paths and levels is the only thing saving this game from an ‘F’.